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Series/Special. Examining media coverage and how it can shape the news. New. (CC)

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David Gregory 8, Us 6, David Petraeus 6, Paula Broadwell 6, Washington 5, Bob 5, Chicago 4, Boehner 3, Obama 3, Darrell Hammond 3, Costas 3, New York 3, Motrin 3, Nixon 2, George Zimmerman 2, Daniel 2, Florida 2, Msnbc 2, Pepto 2, Britain 2,
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  CNN    Reliable Sources    Series/Special. Examining media coverage  
   and how it can shape the news. New. (CC)  

    December 30, 2012
    8:00 - 8:59am PST  

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richard nixon has. >> when richard nixon did it, do you think he felt he would manage to calm the right down or a price he was willing to pay? >> it was a price he was willing to pay. >> this was the week that changed the world. >> richard nixon said when he went to china with you, of course, in '72, the week that he was there, he said this is the week that changed the world. >> he was right. >> well, those were some of the tough decisions we wanted to analyze. do you agree with the choices these people made? what are the toughest decisions you have made? join in the conversation online #toughdecisions on twitter. we'll highlight the most interesting ones on our website. thank you for joining us tonight. we hope your decision to watch our show was not a tough one.
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it's extremely unlikely in my estimation that david gregory is going to jail. but the "meet the press" moderator is under investigation for wielding this particular prop during an interview with the head of the nra. >> so, here is a magazine for ammunition that carries 30 bullets. now, isn't it possible that if we got rid of these, if we replaced them and said, well, you can only have a magazine that carries five bullets or ten bullets, isn't it just possible that we could reduce the carnage in a situation like newtown? >> i don't believe that is going to make one difference. >> why are some gun owners rooting for gregory to be locked up? should a new york newspaper published a map showing the homes of gun owners. the media in the middle of a debate. tomorrow is the last day to avoid what the press has described as an almost apocalyptic outcome. >> to avoid the fiscal cliff -- >> if we go over the fiscal cliff -- >> try to avert the fiscal
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cliff. >> the clock ticks down to the so-called fiscal cliff. >> closer than ever going over the fiscal cliff. >> the fiscal cliff negotiations are going no where. >> president obama may not have gotten a fiscal cliff deal, but keeping up the media pressure this sunday morning with an interview op"meet the press." we'll take a look. from the david petraeus scandal to the trayvon martin tragedy. the media's performance in 2012, we'll have a report card. i'm howard kurtz and this is "reliable sources." it was a striking moment when david gregory brandished that high ammunition magazine last sunday so much so we played it on this program. but that braumpted a d.c. police whether he violated the city's gun laws, one controversy that they fuind under assault.
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and eric who blogs about the media for "washington post." simple question, eric, should david gregory be prosecuted? >> well, i think he should be investigated. i'll leave that up to the prosecutors. but i definitely do believe unlike greta van susstrn and unlike you. >> and the "wall street journal" page. >> it turns out the district of columbia and lawmakers decided that any magazine in excess of ten rounds is a danger to the p public. >> you don't see this as a waste of time on the police's part. a lot of people with magazines with no bullets in them going to jail over this. >> this is the law and the police should look into it. where did he get it? where is it now? if the people and the lawmakers decided this could be a threat to society, then david gregory is just as suitable a target of investigation. >> seems to me this is more
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about public relations than threat to society. talking at all about by refraining from commenting on, did it ask for permission and so forth. i have gotten messages of people saying, as eric says, journalists aren't above the law. what is your take? >> my take is that a journalist should follow the law. and when it comes to knowing what you can brandish on air or not dealing with guns, especially when you have a show with an enormous staff to help you out, you should know what the law is. now, having said that, prosecutors have a lot of proscatorial discretion. you know where i was going on this, howie. having known this, is this something that is really worth their time and effort? that is, also, as fair a question as it is, should a journalist who is doing gun stories be aware of the laws and you go and get guns. >> smuggle a gun through airport security to make a point.
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>> they were aware of the gun laws, though. that is the point. they asked the district of columbia's metropolitan police department, is this okay? they got no answer and went ahead anyway and did it. once you ask and you go and do, you're always going to be investigated, right? >> some conflicting reports on that. >> atf angle on that. >> it also goes to the point, tv is a visual median. now, obviously, if this was a print story, i wouldn't have to hold up a gun to write about it. that's some of the pressure. >> can we agree on one thing? was this a stunt? >> yes. >> absolutely. >> i don't hold up a pen when i write about what i'm doing. >> on the other hand, david gregory and "meet the press" have gotten more publicity out of this moment than anything he's done since he took over the host chair. >> it's been a bonanza for them. that's for sure. i don't think it's good press, though. i don't think it's good press. i think this would have to be an
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exception. >> you know who else has gotten a lot of press, somebody who has been an outspoken advocate for gun control. piers morgan. let's look at an interview he did a while back with gun rights advocate larry prat. >> mr. pratt, you have enormous problems in this country. you have over 300 million guns. >> i honestly don't understand why you would rather have people be victims of a crime than be able to defend themselves. it's incomprehensible. >> you're an unbelievably stupid man, aren't you? >> more than 90,000 people have signed a petition to deport piers morgan, of course, a british journalist because they don't like his views. >> right. >> i would sign a petition saying stop the attacks, which i think have degraded his show. in fact, in another segment that just got some rotation recently, he was talking about the importance of civil discourse and how once you get into attacks it brings the level of discussion way down.
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>> it's his show. i mean, calling and inviting somebody as your guest on your show only to call them stupid doesn't become anyone i think in an interview show. >> i didn't think that was his finest hour. but, if people want to say they don't like him, they find him rude, all fair game when you sit out in front of a television screen. to go from saying that to say, let's kick this guy out of the country. you don't have a legal technicality or a fig leaf. what does that say that so many people are willing to, i would say, defend the second amendment by trashing the first. >> part of this because there is this very neat feature that the whitehouse.gov site has that makes it easy for people to self-organize and have a petition on any topic and use the whitehouse.gov site as it. this is why this petition is happening. a way to vent against morgan because if he had been an american host saying the same thing, people would just find another angle to get at him. >> piers morgan wrote a long
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piece for britain's "daily mail." i'll read a part of it. deport me. i will not stop. in my own efforts to keep the gun control debate firmly in people's minds, how much abuse i'm subjected to. and let me say that for every american who attacked me on twitter, facebook and fox news this week, i've had many more thank me and encourage me to continue speaking out. >> gun control going back to aurora and before. the question is, though, can he get a little more on the facts. whenever he does these attacks on his guests, it's usually in place of him pairing back with some facts or some argumentation. instead, he just, oh, it's nonsense and keeps going on and he doesn't, he doesn't really, really throw contrary facts into the mix. >> but he does bring passion on this issue, in fact, he writes in this piece about having to live through a mass murder in britain and brought tears to his eyes and this is all in the wake of the newtown school tragedy
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that is setting the backdrop here. you agree that he gets to stay in america? >> i love watching his show. >> now, one other flap here involved the journal news newspaper, which published, as i mentioned at the top, a map. an interactive map of all the people in new york's westchester and rockland counties who legally own gun permts and this caused an uproar. people say this is a terrible abuse. the reporter who wrote the story has a gun permit. did the paper go too far? >> yes, it singles out individuals. you can't leave common sense at the door that you're talking about a weapon in someone's home that could or should have been a way of using the database and publicly available information. when you go get a gun permit, you should know people can find that out about you. >> to announce to the world and who has the guns and doesn't has guns and you talked to someone who lives in that area. >> i did. she claimed that she was brought
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down to the level of a sex offender. >> a woman who legally owns a gun. >> legally owns a gun and she was, she didn't want too many facts about her situation to be printed by me, but she felt she was really trashed by this thing. i think the database is fine. i think publishing is fine and i think the story that accompanied it was a piece of garbage and, so, they were unable to take any good lessons for the public out of the gun database. all they did was say, hey, here's these gun owners. are there any criminals in there? a bigger angle in here. they just said, here, have a look. i think that was really lame. >> the blogger retailiated by saying the home address -- when we come back, president obama gives his first sunday morning interview show in three years. first interview on a sunday show, i should say. how david gregory and "meet the press" handled that big opportunity. [ roasting firewood ]
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there's been a lot of talk and very little action covering a fiscal cliff showdown here in washington. as the rhetorical war shifted from the white house to baltalfield, president obama took the rare step of granting an interview to "meet the press" which took place this morning. >> you signed the legislation setting up the legislation 17 months ago. how accountable are you for the fact that washington can't get anything done and we're at this deadline, again? >> i have to tell you, david. if you look at my track record over the last two years, i cut spending by over $1 trillion in 2011. >> joining us now to examine the david gregory interview and the coverage of this fiscal cliff showdown. bob cusack manager of "the
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hill." what does it say about the state of the budgetary wars that president obama chose to go on a sunday talk show. >> he is doing this interview why congress is trying to do it. very critical of congress and i think this interview wasn't exactly combative. he challenged him on it. >> who challenged who? >> david gregory challenged obama on some points but made $1 trillion in cuts, he also vowed to cut the deficit in half in 2009. that has not happened. >> compared david gregory we saw at the top of the show waving that magazine at wain lapierre. this was a low-key interview. >> meek and weak. i didn't find david gregory, i think he lost his punch over this short-lived vacation. a number of points he didn't press the president hard enough. >> the president gave short answers. >> but there's really no excuse. >> the pomp and the ceremony. on the other hand, and you've
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had experience covering barack obama going back to chicago, it can be hard to interrupt during an incumbent president during an interview. >> it is. obama had the home court advantage. david had it in that more aggressive interview and now, l i'll say this quickly. way back in the day when obama united states senator and there was a press conference and i asked a question and he was giving it a very long answer, in my view, and i cut him off and, boy, did i get thumped from him for cutting him off. i don't know -- >> he complained to you later? >> he took me to the wood shed for cutting him off and his view was i was trying to dictate the answer. i was just trying to have him address it. now -- would i absolutely have that same way of asking him if i were sitting with the question.
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>> i'm cutting you off right now. bob, this whole, it's been like watching paint dry and tremendously important story, which the country is facing enormous economic consequences, but how do you cover a process where it's mostly private meetings and nothing seems to be happening? >> it's very difficult because you have both sides coming out of meetings and sometimes saying different things and no way to independently verify it. one of the most difficult things to report until they have a deal and you can count votes for plan b. behind closed doors, you just don't know. that's why c-span is trying to get in the room and get these talks televised because we don't know who to believe. >> all right. >> who is going to propose that all the talks should be on the record and televised. >> who was that? >> i forgot. someone. >> candidate barack obama. >> let me follow up with bob. there have been waves in the coverage where i read reports in the papers and perhaps read them on television. they're getting close to a deal, the two sides are moving and the journalists repeatedly have been too optimistic about this.
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of course, they're going to work something out, yet, overestimating the ability of these two parties that are at each other's throats. two worked something out. >> you have to read the tea leaves. there was a point when obama moved from $250,000 threshold on taxes to 400. boehner put tax rates. >> boehner said for the first time republicans would be willing to support. the question is, how much his troops would be backing him raising tax rates on those over $1 million. which for given the republican fervent opposition to any raise in tax rates, that was a significant step, but then it stopped. >> during that time about a week where the white house and speaker boehner's office was not criticizing each other. lines of communication were open. since then, it's gone south. >> does it seem like a dull story because it's an artificial crisis created by congress itself. they could solve this thing in ten minutes with ample compromise on both sides. while the country is following this news, it's not a breathless anticipation. >> the only thing that is starting to sink in with people,
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howie, where i think it is getting more public attention is that people are now realizing that their paychecks really will be a lot lower very soon if nothing gets done. therefore, i think it is very legitimate interest that finally is getting done when it is sinking in on people that they will have an immediate pocketbook impact if nothing gets done. >> if there is a last-minute sort of minor compromise, bob cusack, where both sides agree to put off the majority of the tax increases or to extend the bush tax breaks for all but the richest but doesn't do anything about the automatic spending cuts which is hundreds of billions of dollars. we'll all call it a deal, but it won't really be a deal, will it? >> we'll deal with the debt for years and years and, also, the other thing is this bill possibly could actually increase the deficit when you deal with it. >> so, reporters have to be careful about the terminology here because on new year's eve we may say, the two sides
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reached a deal, but it may be a kick the can. >> the nation could be downgraded, again. when we had the deal in august of 2011 and then s&p downgrade the nation. you could see that again. >> has the press been commrisant as hyping this as an apocalypse even if there is a budgetary agreement in january and it's not like pushing the country into default, which was the prospect last year. >> i think in your intro tease. i think the degree to which the media swallowed the fiscal cliff is extreme and the voices of paul krugman who says this isn't more than a little ramp. those voices have been buried behind the simplicity of a fiscal cliff. the press loves a deadline. >> the press loves a deadline and loves colorful language like fiscal cliff. thanks for joining us. at the top of the hour, state of the union has republican reaction to the president's interview on "meet
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the press." did we really need to go haywire over david petraeus? mr. margin? don't be modest, bob. you found a better way to pack a bowling ball. that was ups. and who called ups? you did, bob. i just asked a question. it takes a long time to pack a bowling ball. the last guy pitched more ball packers. but you... you consulted ups. you found a better way. that's logistics. that's margin. find out what else ups knows. i'll do that. you're on a roll. that's funny. i wasn't being funny, bob. i know. i need you. i feel so alone. but you're not alone. i knew you'd come. like i could stay away. you know i can't do this without you. you'll never have to. you're always there for me. shh! i'll get you a rental car.
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we are continuing to look at the media's performance, the good, the bad and the ugly in 2012. just when the seemingly endless presidential campaign ended, journalists began to wallow in a strange sex scandal involving david petraeus and paula broadwell and a cast of supporting characters. >> one official describes some of the e-mails as sexually explicit and the equivalent of phone sex over e-mail. >> apparently 20,000 to 30,000 pages of e-mails with jill kelly who set the fbi on paula broadwell. >> biography and mistress paula broadwell. >> florida socialite jill kelley. >> friendly, perhaps flirtatious. >> did we all get a bit carried away? i'll put that question and
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others to our panel of media critics. fred francis senior correspondent and founder of 15seconds.com. laura ashburn editor and steve roberts at the george washington university who spent a couple decades at "new york times." since nothing else came back looking back in our national history and not prosecuting paula broadwell for stalking or anything else. >> we were right after the presidential election, everybody was bored. and this happened during newtown or during the presidential campaign. it would not have been as big a deal. this was a timing issue. >> nothing else going on, remember how, you know, the stakeouts in front of jill kelley's house. >> how do they send 30,000 to 40,000 e-mails. just this nonstop, salacious
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story. >> yes, but it was great television. sex and espionage and spies. i mean, this was the kardashian of national security. >> that's not a good thing, pal. >> wrong metric. that was the kardashian impression in the worst way. it was to try to get eyeballs and sensationalize the story and good tv and good entertainment is not the same as good information. this was not a high-point political coverage. this was inhead of the cia and the fallout, the next man the supreme ally and this is a big story. >> let's have a little perspective. nobody is saying because david petraeus had to resign as head of the cia and general john allen was dragged into it and interesting story on every human level.
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no one is saying it wasn't an important story or it shouldn't be covered. it was two weeks, we dressed it up with, oh, this is about national security, no, this is about privacy technology. >> what everybody cared about the head of the cia couldn't figure out how to send e-mails to his mistress and had to do it on a g-mail account. come on! >> every website you go to, even the most serious websites will have that column on the right, right. with who is, you know, jennifer aniston's wedding plans and kim kardashian -- >> you're obsessed with kardashian. >> it's him. >> jim kelley even look ed like people are under enormous financial pressure, i understand that, to attract eyeballs but a tremendous risk of -- >> i don't think it was overdone. it was such a serious side to it, as well. if you want to be in perspective about the media, the fact that david petraeus did not get
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treated as badly as he could have feeding reporters for so many years. >> let's watch how this plays out. david petraeus, this big come back and what about paula broadwell? what is going to happen to paula? >> isn't that always the way? >> it is always the way. want to look at another lowlight, i would say. perhaps the lowest of the year. in terms of people remembering it. that is what happened on the much awaited day when the supreme court issued its ruling on president obama's health care plan. >> we have breaking news here on the fox news channel. the individual mandate has been ruled unconstitutional. >> so, what appears as if the supreme court justices have struck down the individual mandate, the centerpiece of the health care legislation. >> george, we just got the opinion. i'm taking a quick look at it. it's very long and a very brief look at it. >> it appears the decision has been affirmed in part and reversed in part.
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>> organized chaos, obviously, the high court upheld obama care. was that, were those moments damaging in the blip? >> of course they were damaging. i was there and i thought upheld, not upheld. if just went through the crowd and through the journalists. this is status quo now. right. look at newtown. a lot of mistakes made at the beginning of newtown. journalists committed the cardinal sin of journalism by naming the wrong suspect. and, so, this is now what people have come to expect. >> this was worse. the supreme court was worse because there was no benefit in being first. there was, i teached ethics at george washington. we used this case as a case study and the adage, i try to tell my kids. everybody remembers who got it wrong, not who got it first. >> this is not -- in the scheme of things compared to newtown, i think this was not very much.
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this was a two to three-minute mistake by a few people. had you ever seen a supreme court decision and try to read it quickly? >> this is precisely why you wait two to three minutes and not in the new normal. >> not in the new normal of the media environment where the staff of reporters has been cut in half and the work load has been doubled and everybody is rushing to be first. these mistakes are going to happen. this mistake was not a serious mistake. >> but embolmatic of a much deeper problem. >> that i agree. >> look, no benefit in standing there and saying, well, it's a wrong opinion and i'm going to be 15 seconds ahead. take the time, get it right. >> i also think when you're in this situation, you get it wrong. ask then you're in the situation again in newtown and you get it wrong. people aren't going to believe you any more. we're lower than lawyers in terms of respectability.
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>> normal, as fred said, kind of sad. >> it is pathetic. i mean, you teach, you teach how to be excellent professional journalists. >> not the new normal in my classroom. i tell you that. >> we teach our clients in 15 seconds about comment. the first news is almost always wrong in a breaking story. think about it, in a breaking story, the first reports are almost always wrong. >> let me turn to another episode that just dominated the media coverage, but not in the first couple weeks where the murder of a florida teenager was not covered by the local press and then we had this. >> i've seen this playbook over and over again. the plan trayvon is one of the old tricks and we won't let them get away from it. >> we didn't know in the beginning that there were witnesses from the first night that said that trayvon was winced on top of george zimmerman punching him and beating his head into the
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cement. >> did the media inflame the trayvon martin killing into this racially charged spectacle? >> of course, they did. al sharpton came out as you saw and then went down, led a rally and covered himself. >> and also represented the parents of trayvon and then did his msnbc show. >> that's where the line is wavering and has to be drawn or figured out between being a commentator, not a journalist, but a commentator and an opinion person and an activist. we were having this conversation before. you can't be both. >> this was not, this is not the media's most shining moment and certainly wasn't nbc's biggest moment. i mean, they, the al sharpton thing set that aside for a second, the fact that nbc actually manipulated a quote put on the air that trayvon -- >> just to remind people, nbc that was sued by george zimmerman, the suspect in the case for editing his 911 call to look like he was bringing up
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trayvon's race when the dispatcher asked him about the race of the kid. >> this entire story was politicized right down to the prosecutor who filed the charges on april 11th and then filed to run for re-election on april 30th. >> when you watch msnbc and fox in particular, these are not the only ones, people were just choosing up sides. pro trayvon or pro george zimmerman. >> i want to hear them when zimmerman is acquitted because this is the weakest case. >> you just took sides. >> i'm telling you, this is the weakest case i've ever seen. >> on the other hand, i don't think al sharpton did a good thing because he tried to be both, an activist but i do think it is useful to have voices like sharpton who speak for people who don't have a voice. and young black men in this country often do not have a voice in a situation like this. it was useful to have al sharpton speak for him. >> one other thing we're not talking about is how long it took for the story to become a story.
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do you remember they don't have somebody in the bureau in that town covering the town and it took days. >> it was seen as just another murder. >> right. >> until it became, until the racial aspect even though -- >> the story in jacksonville just a few weeks ago where a man shot kids, nothing. >> fred francis, thanks for taking this look back at the media in 2012. the campaign stories during the presidential campaign. two political reporters in just a moment.
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presidential campaign drew coverage this year but how much unfolding behind the scenes. politco just published an ebook "the end of the line." joining us now glenn thrush and jonathan martin. >> does it seem to you that the media missed some or much of what was happening in this campaign? >> from our reporting, we spent about a month after the election. >> a month? >> digging deep. >> about 23 hours a day. >> we worked -- we found some new information certainly. but, look, i don't think that this campaign is similar to '08 in terms of, you know, john edwards having a mistress and that kind of thing where there is some huge bombshell that, you know, was not seen. >> sarah palin.
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>> what we found out, reinforced what we thought already. what was some interesting, fresh, new details. mitt romney, always had this tension, howie, in terms of how to talk about his personal life and his faith. we found out his campaign had a mormon document arian follow him around that they cut in 2010. they were concerned it was talking too much about romney's faith. it captured something that we knew are was there. >> you write that president obama stored out of a debate session and he had tensions with the staff who knew he was not up to par and that and joked that romney wasn't human enough to get elected. have you reported either of those things during the campaign, they would have been bombshells. >> that is true. i would like to think they're
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bo bombshells now, howie. one thing that was interesting in covering both sides of this story t wasn't, it wasn't as close as we thought. the two organization were not really comparable in terms of scale and competence. that really what comes through. we had one that was more of a facade and the other working on a deeper level than we could have imagined. >> if anyone had reported during the campaign that the romney campaign was not up to par in terms of competence. >> we would have been nailed as being bias. >> now able to report something that you couldn't report and maybe you didn't have any of the information. you would have been nailed as being bias and certain things that are just not politic to say for reporters to say in a campaign when one side is clearly much better at the game. >> but to be fair to us, howie, and the press, there was plenty written about the romney polling showing a much rosier scenario than any of the public data. you know, when they would say
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that their poll had had them up in ohio. a lot of public data showing you are losing ohio. >> a lot of romney's inadequa inadequacies as a candidate. >> the other issue involving facade. no-drama institution and that these guys get along completely well. in the previous book that i did, we talked about frictions on the communication team. those frictions stayed throughout the entire campaign and, in fact, an interesting tension that i report upon between the white house and chicago. david plouffe who was the mastermind of '08 took on a much more substantial role in running things out of chicago after things were starting to fraul apart in may. >> you set up my next question. why now after the contest is over would people on both sides tell you these things? some score settling going on? >> people on the obama side, you know, it's really interesting. you know, obviously, this was,
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this election was a result of this enormous grassroots hero. the grassroots organizers and the people who did the tech stuff, but people want credit for this. a lot of jockying for what happens next. a lot of folks in chicago not getting jobs in the white house because those jobs are already taken. >> when you report that campaign aides tried very hard to keep valerie jared, white house aide away from president obama feeling she riled him up, that says to me -- i'll use this as some source was unhappy with somebody else and using this opportunity through you to take a shot. >> that was multiple, multiple sources. >> no, on that one. in fact, before i published that, several people in the administration who said, for the love of god, she will be around for the next four years. please, don't report that. you'll make our life more difficult. >> on the obama side there are scores to settle and on the romney side, rehabilitation and what these people do next with
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their careers. >> look, i think with any campaign, you've got some staff figures that are polarizing and certainly with the obama campaign that's valerie and there was not as much drama as there are for a lot of losing campaigns, but there was some there and stewart stevens the chief strategist had his share of internal critics and we found out how during reporting that ed gulep guhelpsky and reaching out to women voters. >> how are you able to get this now where you weren't able to get it in the fall campaign? >> operatives in both parties and politicians in both parties tend to be less comfortable talking aboutsuch issues during the campaign versus after the campaign. >> you get people right in the wake of one of the reasons i wanted, we had a choice to whether or not to do this in january or now. one reason we wanted it do it now, people's emotions are fresh on this. they want to talk about this
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stuff. >> on that point, we used to have to wait a year and now last cycle, the big book was by mark h halburn and did you want to beat them out of the gate? >> "newsweek" did their presidential book -- >> like a week later. >> right. we think of that for the digital era. it's a little bit longer but it's on your ipad and on your kindle and available on amazon.com, you can get it today. so, we wanted folks to be able to sort of have a deep dive of what happened during the moments of the campaign. >> but not six months when nobody cared any more. >> a few weeks after the election. >> i'd like to flip it another way. you know, when we look at some of the praise this has gotten, people talk about how quick a read it is. look at it an extended version of a "new yorker." >> in the age of the ebook. thanks for coming by. coming up from bob woodward's snl's darrell hammond. our best interviews of 2012, right after the break.
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we covered the media landscape in 2012 from journalistic blunders to outright fabrication. i had the opportunity to sit down with a wide range of smart folks. we put together some highlights from this past year. when bob woodward stopped by, i asked how it changes from richard nixon to barack obama. >> it's accelerated. you talk to the people in the white house as i've done extensively and they just die because it's 24/7, somebody is going to come out and say, you know, we're going online with the following story, what is
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your response? you have five minutes. you have ten minutes. it can happen at 2:00 a.m. and happen at 8:00 at night and that tends to drive coverage because other people are looking for response. >> with other journalists agreeing to run quotes by the obama team, i put that question to woodward. >> one word answer. if the white house asked for court approval, what would you have said? >> i don't think they could have looked somebody like myself who has been around for so long looked me in the eye and asked that and i would have said, come on. >> perhaps the biggest journalistic fraud of the year was jonah, caught fabricating part of a book. the journalist who exposed him described their last confrontation. >> even in the conversation that you had with him the day before you published, last sunday night, he started to confess to certain things he did wrong. but did he come clean?
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>> no. he lied to me in that conversation. he lied to me in his confession. >> how so? >> he discovered that i had gotten in contact with one of his fake sources and his fake source told me that i had never talked to this guy. >> how does the impact of your work make you feel? in other words, how do you feel about what happened to him? >> not good. don't feel good about it at all. look, it is the job that one has to do in this situation. you get all of this material and you say, good, this is quite a scoop, isn't it? rather well-known journalist. when you're piecing it together and you realize the sort of long-term ramifications of what this is, the consequences this will have, that's hugely uncomfortable. >> when "60 minutes" legend mike wallace died, steve and bob sim remember him not just a great news man but aggressive colleague. >> he had no compunction about
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stealing the story from you. he would come back and find mike was already out shooting. >> people who have tried to imitate him have fallen on their face. because mike never screamed, he never shouted. when you turn on television these days you hear a lot of guys being aggressive and screaming. mike never had to do that, never raised his voice. he raised his eyebrow and that could be devastating. he also did something very few people have picked up which is not complicated. when somebody stopped talking, mike would be silent. he wouldn't come in right away with another question, and very odd, people don't like silence and very often when a guy, mike was trying to break down was confronted with silence, he started saying something he shouldn't have said. >> we had fun with actress ali wentworth star of her yahoo! show and someone who likes to dish on her husband, george
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stephanopoulos. >> george is a private person so -- but this is a joyous thing, howard, ali and george coming together. i gave him, obviously, a rough draft of the book and said do you have a problem with this? he loved it because it is a sweet story, it is our story. i'm not twittering pictures of him on the toilet. it's a nice thing. >> he didn't take out a red pen and said this is out. >> he didn't which was surprising. i've also learned. early on in our marriage i was blah-blah-blah about everything. >> talked about your sex life and everything else. >> and like a puppy whose face has been pushed in the soiled carpet i am house broken. >> everyone remembers the "saturday night live" impression of al gore but darrell hammond told me it wasn't easy to capture the former vp until debates and that reminded him of a certain sportscaster. >> i went to comedy central in the village four or five nights
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a week trying to find an angle on this southern guy who wore the mantle of nice guy does well. like trying to do bob costas. costas said why aren't you doing me? i don't know, nothing there. >> he wanted to be done by darrell hammond. >> he came up to me at hbo, and i don't do a great costas, i do a good costas, this is what he said, he goes, you've got the great koppel, the great clinton, the great gore, but you can't do me. you tried to do me and you failed utterly. >> it was a sad day for me when newsweek announced it was ending its print run not because i've spent the last couple years there. editor tina brown my boss called the move inevitable. >> i mean in the last 12 months i've had to just really adjust in myself in terms of feeling i have been a print junky, like the ultimate magazine junky,
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read them all my life, but my own habits have changed dramatically. i don't actually go to newsstands anymore. even on stations now and in airports, i find myself deciding i'm going to opt for what is on my kindle on the plane and i walked through those planes and i see everybody reading screens. it's one of those things where yes, i'm sorry because, you know, i feel a certain romance still for print and always will, still love books more than i love reading screens actually, but at the same time, i know everything has changed and i alsos want to go where our readers are. >> "newsweek" published its last print issue this week recalling the magazine's role in 9/11, the monica lewinsky scandal and other major news moments. the scandal that transfixed the media was the david petraeus a fair which prompted him to resign as cia director. as a general petraeus was famous for courting reporters especially in war zones as we were reminded by "the washington post."
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>> access could be intoxicating. you were in that exclusive bubble. he would bring you in to meeting he had with subordinate commanders at times even into sessions that involved secret material that you were told you couldn't write about. you get to zip around the battlefield on blackhawk helicopters popping in to front line bases. it's a thrill of traveling with a four-star and for the journalists who got to be in there, it was a sense you were getting to see an aspect of our modern wars that your colleagues, your competitors weren't otherwise able to see. it was a revealing remarkable glimpse. so sure, that built friendships. wasn't just that. petraeus was an esid dues which e-mailer. >> we've learned something about that. >> yes. i wasn't meaning to crack a joke here. there were times i would joke to my wife, petraeus could respond to an e-mail faster than she would respond to me. if you had a question about
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something, certainly on a story that had something to do with him, he would get back really quickly, often times with a couple paragraphs. >> which is why in the end, be petraeus undoubtedly got gentler treatment from the press than paula broadwell. >> why amazon is cracking down on overly friendly book revi reviewers.
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finally if you're peddling a book on amazon reviews by ordinary folks are important. amazon is cracking down on reviews that might be by your mom. as "the new york times" reports the on-line book seller has deleted thousands of